"it is a case for all the daughters of my country."
The Islamabad High Court has handed a double death sentence to Zahir Jaffer for the rape and murder of Noor Mukadam.
Noor, the daughter of former diplomat Shaukat Mukadam, was found murdered at Jaffer’s home in Islamabad on July 20, 2021.
The FIR said that police took her father to Jaffer’s house where his “daughter had been brutally murdered with a sharp-edged weapon and beheaded”.
After two years of legal proceedings, Jaffer was sentenced to death in February 2022. He also received a 25-year sentence for the rape.
The Islamabad High Court has now upheld the sentence.
It turned Jaffer’s 25-year sentence into another death sentence.
The high court dismissed Zahir Jaffer’s appeal along with the appeals of two of his domestic employees who had contested the trial court’s decision: Mohammad Iftikhar and Mohammad Jan, who were both co-accused in the case.
The judgement, which had been reserved since December 21, 2022, was delivered by a two-judge panel presided over by Chief Justice Aamer Farooq.
The heinous murder has dominated headlines ever since the atrocity incited outrage throughout the South Asian region.
After sentencing, Shaukat said that the maximum punishment was “necessary”.
He declared: “I have been saying that it’s not just my daughter’s case; it is a case for all the daughters of my country.”
On social media, many welcomed the double death penalty.
Pakistani writer and film industry professional Osman Khalid Butt tweeted:
“Justice delayed… but justice delivered.”
Police official Amna Baig shared her relief at the verdict and thanked the victim’s father.
She tweeted: “It’s such a win for women of Pakistan – all credit goes to Noor’s Father for standing with his daughter in her death, in her honour, keeping her alive through his fight for justice.
“We owe you, sir.”
Another Twitter user shared her overwhelming emotions at the verdict, writing:
“I type this teary-eyed. It took the justice system in this country approximately two years to sentence this vile murderer. Let that sink in.
“But this is for the battle that Noor’s family, especially her father fought!”
Investigators said Jaffer lured Noor Mukadam to his home, held her there for two days and then brutally murdered her.
Two of Jaffer’s employees, Mohammad Iftikhar and Mohammad Jan were jailed for ten years each on charges of abetting in the crime.